“Think Like a Watershed,” advocates Oliver Brandes, leader of the POLIS Water Sustainability Project




Think Like a Watershed

“More than a decade into the 21st century, the idea of collaborative watershed management has come of age, and watershed groups across the province are eager to participate. It is all about learning to think like a watershed. That is our vision,” emphasizes Oliver Brandes,Senior Research Associate and Co-Director. He is also the leader of the POLIS Water Sustainability Project.


A Governance System Rooted in Ecological Principles

“Sustainable water management must focus on ensuring all ‘new’ water comes from better use of existing supplies, and from changes in attitudes and water-use habits. By demonstrating the powerful potential of new approaches, new perspectives, and innovation, the Water Sustainability Project team works to develop a clear model for ecosystem-based water governance in Canada—a model based on conservation, stewardship, and sustainability.”

“By examining all actions in the context of the watershed, we can move toward a governance system that is rooted in ecological principles, and shift the focus towards managing the people within a watershed, rather than controlling the watershed itself.”


About the POLIS Project

The POLIS Water Sustainability Project began as part of the POLIS Project on Ecological Governance. It works to develop innovative legal, institutional, and practical approaches that embody the principles of ecological governance, providing the foundation for a comprehensive legal and policy framework for sustainable water management.

To read an op-ed article co-authored by Oliver Brandes, and published by the Vancouver Sun, click on Learning to Think Like a Watershed. Oliver Brandes was the principal author of At a Watershed: Ecological Governance and Sustainable Water Management in Canada, published in 2005. To download a copy, click here.

Oliver Brandes is a frequent contributor to stories posted on the waterbucket.ca website, in particular on the Water-Centric Planning community-of-interest.


To Learn More:

To read the complete story posted on the Water-Centric Planning community-of-interest, click on “Think Like a Watershed”, advocates Oliver Brandes, leader of the POLIS Water Sustainability Project and download a PDF version.